The Price is right! Olympic gold-medalist Lauren eases to victory on her professional boxing debut as she dominates Valgerdur Gudstensdottir at Wembley Arena and cruises to unanimous points win
- Olympic champion Lauren Price eased to victory on her pro boxing debut
- Price beat Icelandic fighter Valgerdur Gudstensdottir via unanimous decision
- The Welsh star overwhelmed her opponent with some lightning-fast combos
For someone who has excelled in four different sports, there wasn’t much doubt that Lauren Price would do the business on her professional debut.
As a former kickboxing world champion, taekwondo star and even a footballer for Cardiff City, Price is naturally gifted, and so it showed for the Olympic gold medalist as she cruised to victory against Valgerdur Gudstensdottir at Wembley Arena with a unanimous victory to mark her bow inside the ring.
Price was the better fighter from start to finish in her welterweight contest, but it was her electric hands and speedy footwork that caught the eye as she cruised through her six rounds to open up her professional career with a win.
Lauren Price cruised to victory on her professional debut as she earned a unanimous win against Valgerdur Gudstensdottir at Wembley Arena
It was a dominant display for Price, who said she was simply glad for the six rounds banked
‘It was a great six rounds under my belt,’ she said after her first pro bout. ‘I wanted to relax in there, I didn’t want to rush my work. I really enjoyed it.’
After a fairly quiet spell in Tokyo last year without a crowd, Price was buoyed by a vibrant atmosphere at Wembley, which she admits spurred her on.
‘[The crowd] was absolutely amazing,’ she added. ‘I’d like to thank everyone who bought tickets to watch me. I’m buzzing.’
Her trainer Rob McCracken – who has already guided another Olympian to success in Anthony Joshua – said he was overjoyed at his fighter’s display.
Price’s electric hands were too much for her opponent as she made a quick start to life as a pro
‘She was great tonight,’ he said. ‘She’s been in camp a long time, she did the Olympics and we’ve kept her in camp since then. Great debut, she asked her a few questions and Lauren responded. She’ll only get better.’
Nearly a year on from the day she became an Olympic champion after seeing off China’s Li Qian at the Tokyo Olympics, all the heat was on the 27-year-old with the press box filled with reporters intrigued to see how this British star’s career would evolve after taking the headgear off.
This was a grand stage for a star to be born. Price has come a long way from the tiny Welsh town of Ystrad Mynach where she grew up as she fought in the shadow of Wembley Stadium. One day, she might end up gracing the iconic ground, based on this performance.
Price made a lightning-fast start with a handful of stinging jabs and combinations that seemed to leave her Icelandic opponent flustered in the opening exchanges.
Price pulled off a number of terrific combinations to leave Gudstensdottir reeling
A clean hook to the head brought the first cheers from the crowd – using her footwork well and later having more successive with another electric combination that caught Gudstensdottir again in round two.
For Price, this was more about finding her rhythm – allowing her opponent some breathing space and dodging and dipping around her as Gudstensdottir unloaded her first meaningful shots on the contest.
The Welsh southpaw’s speed will be her biggest atttribute throughout her career, and Gudstensdottir struggled to find an answer to it as she unloaded a few more swift hooks to the head.
With only six rounds to showcase her ability, she stepped up the tempo in round four – rocking Gudstensdottir with another crushing right hook.
The pressure was firmly on Price as she began her professional career after winning gold at the Tokyo Olympics last summer
Price’s quick one-twos were successfully breaking through the jab of Gudstensdottir, who stood nearly motionless as the Olympic star let rip.
By the final round, Price had found her groove and eased off, instead looking for counter punches with her superior timing – one of which landed perfectly and left Gudstensdottir in a daze.
She barely celebrated at the final bell, but knew the job was done. Price didn’t need to work as hard as she did, but it was a statement to her future rivals of what was coming their way as she won by a score of 60-54.